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An interesting hour at the range

2327 Views 22 Replies 22 Participants Last post by  manfellow
I went to a range in a gun shop the other day with a friend who had just purchased and new pistol and was anxious to try her out. He asked me to go along so I did to see his new pistol and to send a few rounds down range. I did not want to buy alot of range ammo so I just shot a box of 50 and called it a day while my friend was still shooting.

In walks a guy and his girlfriend and they take up a lane together. He places his target in the hanger and has not a clue how to send the target down range. So I show him. He sends the target about 25 yards down range. I notice he is fumbling around with his magazine and then he asks me if I would load his magazine for a dollar. I walked up to him and said "instead of paying me a dollar why don't you let me show you how to load your magazine and you will know forever". As I am observing the magazine and the bullets in his hand I notice he is attempting to insert the bullets in backwards. I inform him that it will probaby not work so well that way and demonstrate to him how to properly load a magazine. I watch him lood a few rounds and I suggest to him that he move the target closer for his first few shots so he will actually hit the target and then when he feels confident with his accuracy he should them move the target further down range in stages. Then I back off and let him complete his task.

Next I oberve him insert his mag, rack the slide, then grip the pistol with finger inserted in the trigger (it was pointed down range) as he places his weak hand over top of strong hand with his thumb behind the slide as he aims at his target. I yell "stop! Finger off the trigger! Put the gun on the table!", and he actually does it. I explain to him what would have happened if he had fired the pistol, and that I just saved him a trip to the emergency room. I then go and get my pistol from my case. Show him and his girlfriend that there is no magazine in the pistol, and there is nothing in the chamber, I then showed them how to properly grip a pistol and advise him that he should never place his finger on the trigger until he is ready to destroy what the gun is aimed at. I then sugest that they both take an introduction to pistol course and that they should find it interesting and helpful.

By this time my friend has used up his ammo and is packing up. I quickly retreat from the range back to the store. I went to the shop personnel and explained to them what had occured and that I had saved them a 911 call. They told me the guy came in with his own pistol and told them he new what he was doing as he purchased his ammo. They then said he would have only fired his pistol once like that and would have learned a valuable lesson. I can't beleive that people can purchase a gun, go to a range, and not know how to load thier weapon let alone shoot it. Especially with no supervision. There has to be a better way.

Did I get involved in something that I should not have? I don't think so. I guess everyone has to learn sometime, but on a range without supervision does not make sense to me.
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Good Job

GOOD Job, You probley saved gun onewrs & the shooter no dought a BAD REP :thumsup
Did I get involved in something that I should not have? I don't think so. I guess everyone has to learn sometime, but on a range without supervision does not make sense to me.
I agree. You stepped in at the right time.
Looks like you did him a big favor. And her too! You definitely saved him a trip to the E.R. And maybe somebody else too. I'm glad you were there to give him a helping hand. :clap

Good idea telling him to get some instruction. I hope he listened.
Good advice Saw1212!

I don't know why some people don't even bother learning the ropes first before jumping into the water. I have so much respect for firearms that I made sure I took a beginner's course first before I bought my first pistol even though I have been shooting rifles when I was younger. To me it was just a no-brainer.
Chalk up another for the good guys! Way to be vigilant and very kind to offer a helping hand.
Proud to be one of you!:drinks
Did I get involved in something that I should not have? I don't think so. I guess everyone has to learn sometime, but on a range without supervision does not make sense to me.
A few minutes of your time has probably left a lifetime impression on this clueless couple. You absolutely did the right thing by saving an accident. I would have also had a few stern words with the staff at this range.

Thinking long term you probably instilled in these newbies the gun safety mentality of responsible gun owners. You will never know but this couple will probably do the same thing to a newbie in the future.

Never hesitate to step in when you know you are teaching safety.

Good job, saw1212! You've made us all proud. :clap:clap
A few minutes of your time has probably left a lifetime impression on this clueless couple. You absolutely did the right thing by saving an accident. I would have also had a few stern words with the staff at this range.

Thinking long term you probably instilled in these newbies the gun safety mentality of responsible gun owners. You will never know but this couple will probably do the same thing to a newbie in the future.

Never hesitate to step in when you know you are teaching safety.

Good job, saw1212! You've made us all proud. :clap:clap

+1
great point!
This guy's mistake was taking his girlfriend with him to the range. No guy wants to admit they are clueless about guns or act like they don't know what they are doing with one in front of their woman. It was not too long ago that I was about to go shoot with a buddy of mine that I told him the only experience I had with pistols was when I shot in Navy boot camp. He agreed to school me up as long as long as I had good safety knowledge and under no circumstances could I bring my wife. I didn't realize why he was so persistent about this until now. That was one of the best days I ever had though. Ever since I have been obsessed. :ak
I went to a range in a gun shop the other day
I have a feeling I know which range you went to. It's upstairs from the shop, has tons of brass on the floor and absolutely no supervision? I shot there once and found quite a few using it were "accidents waiting to happen." I left shortly thereafter, never to return.
Another reason for genetic engineering what a moron.
GOOD Job!!!

We are all responsible for each others safety on the line. You did the right thing, I only wish more people would step up when needed.
Good job SAW...maybe every public range should have new customers show them a certificate of completion on a firearm safety course i.e. like the one you turn into the state for you Concealed Carry but a small laminated one.. They could even offer a course themselves at minimal costs..I know it scares hell out of me everytime I go to the public range..I hate the idea of mandated training but there are so many new shooters out there that have no idea of personal responsibility and firearms safety it's getting really spooky at the ranges..The government doesnt have to mandate it but the ranges themselves could in order to keep their customers safe from those that havent had any training. Just a thought..
I haven't been there but a co worker of mine told me that the place he shoots at (somewhere in south miami) makes you take a course before shooting. Its only about 5 minutes or so but afterwards they give you a card for future visits so they know you've taken the course.

Perhaps other ranges should follow.
I haven't been there but a co worker of mine told me that the place he shoots at (somewhere in south miami) makes you take a course before shooting. Its only about 5 minutes or so but afterwards they give you a card for future visits so they know you've taken the course.

Perhaps other ranges should follow.
That sounds like a wonderful idea from the range's point of view. At least they would know that the guy could load & safely shoot the weapon.

****

SAW, you did good. When I was young, I shot a LOT of revolvers. Strong hand grip, weak hand thum wraps over the strong hand to cock the hammer. First time I did that with a .22 semi, I learned a whole new grip. (still got a set of scars to go along with it.)
I haven't been there but a co worker of mine told me that the place he shoots at (somewhere in south miami) makes you take a course before shooting. Its only about 5 minutes or so but afterwards they give you a card for future visits so they know you've taken the course.

Perhaps other ranges should follow.
I have been in that situation several times at local gun ranges. I have also been asked many times by people there to show them how to shoot. I was once asked by a man traning to get his license to carry a gun as a hired security office (they make more money) to show him how to pass his shooting test cause he had a hard time hitting the target at a specific distance. He was shooting a revolver which looked well used that was issued to him by the company. He couldnt hit the target at 20 ft. He didnt know how to use the sites or how to aim properly. The security company gave him a gun to practice with for a month and then come to take a shooting test. That was all!!! insane. They showed him nothing. I took about 20 min and showed him the sites and how to handle the gun. Finger off trigger till on target, and how to aim. After just that mch he was hitting the target. I then told him he needed to find a class, but he couldnt afford it right now. Yep. That made me uncomfortable as all get-out, but his constitutional rights afforded him the right to carry a gun. I dont go to ranges much any more unless Im taking someone to shoot for the first time. And then we spend at least a little time on saftey and safe gun handling before we even get there. I have seen some that should never pick up a gun let alone shoot one. But it is every americans right to keep and bear arms. I will not infringe upon that. That is one reason that I will take the time to show someone at least the limited knowledge that I have aqquired from hunting with experienced people as a youth till now here on this forum, which by the way I thank everyone here who shares their knowledge with the rest of us. Its like racing, you dont want to teach the driver your racing against what you know to give him an advantage over you, you teach him so he will be good enough to keep from getting into a wreck with you. We are all in this together, lke it or not. Good job for being observent enough to help out a fellow gun owner. As far as getting angry with the gun range, might want to be careful about how much we complain about, we are already losing some of our 1st and 2nd amendment rights little by little. I am all for safety but if we keep allowing the government to protect us from ourselves we might be doing ourselves a disfavour. Altho I like the safe shooter card done on the initiative of the gun range owners. wouldn't mind if they even charged a bit for it. Ok, im done rambling now sorry........john
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(it was pointed down range)
Other than ask you for help, it seems this was the only thing the guy did right.

Guns were not in my family home when growing up and I had no "mentor" or teacher. I am "self-taught" and still ever learning about firearms and their intricacies, and the responsibilities of ownership, maintenance, carry and use of them. With all the information available on the web, as well as in books and magazines (and of course firearms classes), there is no reason for someone to be so clueless in regards to what even the most simple minded among us know can be a deadly weapon.

Thank you for helping him.
Alot depends on the personnel where you buy or shoot. When i got my Glock i told the salesman i had only had revolvers and this was my first 9mm. He showed me how to use the mag loader, operate the gun and field strip for cleaning. Then i did it with him to make sure i did it right. This shop was very helpful, friendly and professional. It was also good business because now they're about the only ones i deal with.
Well done!! :thumsup

Also, a big thumbs up to your "student" for being willing to simply ASK for help then having the patience to TAKE it. You're absolutely right, I have very little doubt that you not only likely saved him a trip to the ER, but, opened his eyes more to the responsability he's taking on with that firearm.

Again, well done to both of you! Hopefully, with any luck, later on, when he has more exprerience and knowlage and gets the opportunity, he'll pass his newly learned knowlage on to the next guy he sees needing it!

It's this kind of example that will change the perception of gun owners we so desparately need in these times of so many BAD examples.
maybe every public range should have new customers show them a certificate of completion on a firearm safety course ... ...I know it scares hell out of me everytime I go to the public range...there are so many new shooters out there that have no idea of personal responsibility and firearms safety it's getting really spooky at the ranges...the ranges themselves could in order to keep their customers safe from those that havent had any training.
+1 ... Same situation up here

I've turned around from my firing lane to find loaded weapons pointing at me from the back benches. I always assess the individual(s) to gauge whether I should speak with them or go get the RSO instead.
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